THOUSANDS of customers affected by cancelled flights out of UK airports may be in line for compensation depending on their circumstances.
EasyJet announced today it expected its capacity for flights between July and September to be around 90%.
It said it was cutting the flights to help manage "operational problems", including staff shortages in ground handling and flight caps at London Gatwick and Amsterdam.
It added a very tight labour market for crew, made worse by increased security check times for new staff, had further reduced its capacity.
Chief executive Johan Lundgren said the airline was sorry it had not been able to deliver the service customers expected.
Heathrow Airport ordered to cancel 10% of its flights earlier today as well to cope with a baggage backlog.
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Rory Boland, editor of Which? Travel, said with summer holidays nearing, EasyJet should provide clarity on the flights that are being cut.
It comes after hundreds of flights out of the UK were cancelled in recent weeks, with thousands of travellers left stranded abroad and at home.
What are my rights if my flight is cancelled or delayed?
If your flight has been cancelled or delayed, you have options.
If your flight is cancelled you are entitled to a choice of a refund or the next available flight.
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It doesn't technically have to be the same airline – but many will not offer an alternative with a different airline.
If the cancellation is down to the airline and it is EU-regulated, you as a customer are entitled to compensation.
What about if my flight is cancelled or delayed close to my flight time?
If your flight is cancelled less than 14 days before departure, you could be owed hundreds in compensation, MoneySavingExpert advised last month as well.
The amount you are due will depend on the length of time between cancellation, the date you were due to fly, and the distance you were due to travel.
For example, if your flight was cancelled less than 7 days before departure, is between 1,500 to 3,500 kilometres in distance and lands up to 3 hours after the due time you can claim £168 back.
According to the website, the maximum you can claim back is £505.
When am I not entitled to compensation?
You will not be entitled to a refund if your flight was cancelled due to reasons out of their control, such as extreme weather.
One thing to be wary of, is that some airlines may stretch the definition of "extraordinary circumstances".
However, you can challenge them through the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the aviation regulator.
You might have a case if your flight has been cancelled due to adverse weather but other airlines are flying, for example.
The airline also does not have to offer you compensation if you're told about the cancellation at least two weeks in advance, or if it's cancelled and rerouted between one and two weeks of the day from the day you are due to leave.
You also won't be able to claim compensation for flights cancelled and then rerouted which arrive at your destination no more than two hours later than planned.
Can I get compensation if the airline has gone bust?
This is likely to not affect EasyJet customers later this summer, as their cancellations are due to staff shortages, air traffic control restrictions and runway works.
However, it's still important to know whether you'llget compensation if your airline has gone bust.
Flybmi went into administration earlier this year.
Your rights depend on whether or not you booked your flights through a site that is ATOL protected.
ATOL protection means you're guaranteed a refund if a company goes into administration and an alternative route home will be found for you.
Your booking will be ATOL protected if you booked a package holiday through a travel agent.
It is also law that your holiday must be ATOL protected if it is a package holiday.
You should also make sure you are given an ATOL certificate after getting protection.
On top of this, if you booked your flights through a company that isn't protected and paid with a credit card you may be able to claim through your provider under the section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act.
If this doesn't work then you’ll have to join the list of creditors who are owed cash and you're unlikely to get your money back.
In any case, it's important to check your rights before flying, in case a flight is cancelled.
Can I get a refund if my connecting flight is cancelled?
Rules on this have changed recently.
Previously, you could only apply for compensation if your flight was departing an EU country or you were flying with an EU-based airline, and your flight was delayed by more than three hours.
Under new rules, you'll be able to claim a payout if you checked-in at an EU airport.
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If you're on a non-UK flight which connects to a UK flight you could also be in line for compensation.
You will get compensation if you booked both flights as a single booking, you were delayed for more than three hours, and the delay was the airline's fault.
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